A defibrillator will soon be in place in the Longformacus valley, and members of the Lammermuirs Moorland Group have received cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR)training.
The Horseupcleugh estate at Longformacus has ordered the defibrillator, and farmers, shepherds, gamekeepers and ghillies went for training last week at Duns fire station.
A spokesperson for Lammermuirs Moorland Group said afterwards: “A huge thank you to Duns fire station for assisting with the defibrillator training of some of our group members.
“That’s yet another of our estates now all trained up and equipped ready in the event of emergency.
“The majority of our Lammermuirs sporting estates have now purchased defibrillators, as well as having a large number of estate staff trained to use them in an emergency.
“This is something which is not only a great comfort to all of our staff and visitors but also to the many walkers that pass through our beautiful Lammermuir hills.”
Craig Jones arranged the training on behalf of the estate, and he added: “The reason we asked for training is that the owner of the estate is financing the cost of a defibrillator for the whole of the valley.
“Anyone in the valley that knows how to use it will know where it is.
“They say the first 15 minutes are crucial, and it would take the Duns fire service 25 minutes to get here.
“On a shooting day, there can be up to 40 members of staff here.”
The first group to undergo CPR training with the fire service included farmers, shepherds, gamekeepers and ghillies.
Craig added: “The positive response from our gang was great, and we will encourage the rest of the group to go down to Duns and get the training.”
Matt Acton, station manager for the Newtown Street station, said: “The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is committed to supporting the Scottish Government’s out-of-hospital cardiac arrest strategy, which aims to dramatically increase patients’ survival chances and save as many as 1,000 lives by 2020.
“As part of this strategy, the aim is to provide an additional 500,000 people in Scotland with the skills required to be able to carry out cardio-pulmonary resuscitation.
“In a pioneering partnership between the service and the British Heart Foundation, all 356 of our fire stations are equipped with foundation-donated Call Push Rescue training kits, and each station can act as a base for local people to learn vital CPR skills and potentially save someone’s life if they go into cardiac arrest.
“Prior to March 2015, the survival rate from out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in the Scottish Borders was just four per cent, below the Scottish average of seven to 10%.
“Two years on, and through this partnership approach, the figure for the Borders has risen to 29%.
“It takes just 30 minutes to learn CPR using the Call Push Rescue kit, and community groups are able to contact their local fire station to arrange a time to go to a station, watch the training DVD and practise with the kit.”